Dear Jane: What Apps Do You Need For Each Device?

http://www.kobobooks.com/smartphonesWelcome to Dear Jane, a weekly column based upon reader mailbag questions on anything relating to e-books. No question is too simple or too mundane. We are all learning together. Send your questions to Jane@DearAuthor.com with "Dear Jane" in the subject matter.

Dear Jane: I was wondering if it would be possible for you to do a write up about what devices can download from each of these companies and what apps you would need to use. I know that on the Borders site they ask you to download the free Borders eBook app but I'm not sure if that is for a laptop, iPad, Kindle, etc. Same with Amazon and B&N. - M

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Dear M: If you are reading on a dedicated e-book reader like the Kindle, nook, Sony, or Kobo, these devices do not any apps to be downloaded in order to read an e-book. In fact, these devices won't allow you to add new apps.* For a laptop or desktop, you have the following choices. I am just listing the programs with my recommendations. Over the next few weeks, I will do a mini rundown of each set of programs as it is too much for one post.

*You can root the nook Color but it is not something I recommend unless you have an entire weekend free and are fairly technologically adept.

Nook Owners:

Kindle Owners:

  • Download the appropriate Kindle software for Mac or PC.
  • There are Kindle Apps for the Android, Blackberry, iPhone/iTouch, iPad, and Windows 7.

Kobo Owners:

  • Download the appropriate Kobo Software for Mac or PC and Adobe Digital Editions. ADE will be the software you use to download digital libraries and shop at other stores.
  • There are Kobo Apps for the Android, Blackberry, iPhone/iTouch, iPad, and Palm Pre.

Sony Reader Owners:

  • Download the appropriate Sony software for Mac or PC and Adobe Digital Editions. ADE will be the software you use to download digital libraries and shop at other stores.
  • There is a Sony App for Android. An iThing App is supposed to be coming soon.


Organized by operating system (mobile systems not included). Note, this is not an exhaustive list but rather a hand selected list of apps that I thought most people would use or be interested in using.

PC:

  • Calibre - compatible with non encrypted ePub, Mobi, LRF, LIT, FB2, and RTF.
  • Copia - compatible ePub files encrypted through ADE, but not BN epubs.
  • Kindle for Windows - compatible with Kindle books and MobiPocket books with NO DRM. Can use the app to read non encrypted books not purchased at Amazon so long as the format is PRC or MOBI.
  • Nook - compatible with ePub files encrypted with BN's special software key (aka DRM).
  • Sony Reader - compatible with ePub files encrypted with ADE (not compatible with BN epubs). Can use the app to read non encrypted books not purchased at BN so long as the format is ePub.
  • Stanza - compatible with non encrypted ePub, LIT, HTML, Mobi, PDF (limited conversion abilities) files. Stanza Desktop is a crude e-reader and is primarily used to view books before transferring onto an iThing device.
  • Adobe Digital Editions - compatible ePub and PDF files encrypted through ADE and with BN e-books.
  • FB Reader - compatible with NON encrypted ePub, fb2, plucker, MobiPocket. Other formats are minimally supported. Please see the FAQ on FBReader.org.
  • MobiPocket - compatible with MobiPocket format (PRC) with or without DRM. Please note, that secure mobipocket CANNOT be read on the Kindle without the DRM stripped off.

Mac:

  • Calibre - compatible with non encrypted ePub, mobi, LRF, LIT, FB2, and RTF.
  • Copia - compatible ePub files encrypted through ADE, but not BN epubs.
  • Kindle App - compatible with Kindle books and MobiPocket books with NO DRM. Can use the app to read non encrypted books not purchased at Amazon so long as the format is PRC or MOBI.
  • Nook or NookStudy - compatible with ePub files encrypted with BN's special software key (aka DRM). Can use the app to read non encrypted books not purchased at BN so long as the format is ePub. I had to download NookStudy in order for my BN e-books to download as ePubs but the NookStudy App is very robust.
  • Sony Reader- compatible with ePub files encrypted with ADE (not compatible with BN epubs). Can use the app to read non encrypted books not purchased at BN so long as the format is ePub.
  • Stanza - compatible with non encrypted ePub, LIT, HTML, Mobi, PDF (limited conversion abilities) files. Stanza Desktop is a crude e-reader and is primarily used to view books before transferring onto an iThing device.

Nonplatform dependent (can read using your web browser if you are on a PC or Mac):

  • Bookworm - compatible with any NON DRM'ed ePub books.
  • IbisReader - compatible with any NON DRM'ed ePub books.
  • Google eBooks - compatible only with books purchased through Google eBooks.
  • Kobo - Kobo has a web based reader that you can use to read your Kobo purchased e-books.

Sincerely,
Jane

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